How to Start a Website Business

					                                              Integrated Web Services (IWS)

                       IWS Project Initiation Plan

                        Sample Midsized Website

Business Unit / Program Area (Customer):
Project Sponsor:
Project Manager:
Proposed Project Start Date:
Proposed Project End Date:
Key Contact, Phone #
Date Submitted:
Date Approved:
Last Updated:

IWS Project Initiation Plan
                                                                                                Integrated Web Services (IWS)

                              Executive Summary.................................................................................. 1
                              Goals and Objectives................................................................................ 1
                              Project Scope............................................................................................ 2
                              Assumptions ........................................................................................... 13
                              Stakeholder Roles and Responsibilities ................................................. 13
                              Communication Plan............................................................................... 14
                              Budget..................................................................................................... 16
                              Management Approaches ...................................................................... 17
                              Signatures ............................................................................................... 20

Executive Summary
<How an improved site will serve the clients’ needs better>

Implementing the new site in CommonSpot will make it much easier for department faculty and staff to
maintain the content of the site and to use it to publicize news items, events, and faculty or student
research and activities.

Goals and Objectives
Overall Goal: Redesign and re-implement the website for greater functionality, attractiveness, and
ease of maintenance.

Specific Objectives and Success Criteria

      Objective                       Description                                         Success Criteria
1.    Website design must be                                                              The banner of the site meets
      compliant with Cornell                                                              the specifications documented
      identity standards                                                                  at
2.    Website design must be                                                              Client approval
      aesthetically pleasing and
      convey an impression of
      modernity, scientific
      excitement, and
      educational excellence
3.    Users must be able to           Site must follow UI standards,                      1. fewer phone contacts from
      navigate and orient easily      render properly on all major                        people seeking information
                                      browsers and operating                              that is available on the site
                                      systems                                             2. positive reactions from
                                                                                          people using the site
                                                                                          3. faculty, students,
                                                                                          prospective students, and
                                                                                          alumni are able to find
                                                                                          information easily
4.    Site must be easy to            Site structure will allow non-                      After training, faculty and staff
      maintain                        technical staff to update                           will be able to enter and
                                      content; dynamic elements will                      modify content without
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      Objective                        Description                            Success Criteria
                                       be managed through user-               difficulty. New content
                                       friendly forms                         managers will be able to come
                                                                              up to speed with only one or
                                                                              two hours’ investment in
                                                                              learning the system.
                                       Documentation and training will
                                       be provided for content
                                       managers and authors
5.    Site must be robust and                                                 Site uptime >99%
      perform well                                                            Average page load time < 5
                                                                              seconds average (except on
                                                                              dialup connection)
                                                                              Site renders correctly on all
                                                                              major browsers and in print
6.    Site content must be             Content will be entered and            All issues identified in QA are
      comprehensive and                proofed for every page                 corrected and verified; Client
      accurate                         specified in the site map (by          approval or any other
                                       client)                                independent QA at client’s

Project Scope
General Project Scope

In Scope
Prepare 2 variants of home-page design (to comps) for client selection
Prepare comps for full site design from the chosen home page design, through secondary, tertiary, and
specialty pages (total of 2 cycles of design review and modification)
Implement site in CommonSpot with the structure of the approved site map
Incorporate approved design using css
Modest redesign of two sections
Process and incorporat e images as per the approved design and content inventory list
Implement features as described in the Functional Specification document (below):
       navigation
       Kerberos -aut horized faculty/staff section,
       data management for people, features, news, research fields, seminars
       dynamic data update of courses listing from Registrar’s database
       student survey (webform)
       research matrix
Image composition, processing, sizing and compression as specified by the design comps, plus up to 50 on -
page images
Initial content entry by IWS-trained personnel, with progress tracking
Designer review and style correction for cont ent after entry
Quality assurance testing to include verifying:
     - proper browser rendering for the following browsers:
Internet Explorer 6 and 7
Firefox 1.5 and 2.0
Safari 2.0
On Windows XP, Mac OS X, and (when appropriate) Windows 2000.
We are constantly re-evaluating our browser test suite, there is a possibility that our test recommendations will
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In Scope
change bet ween now and when the site is ready for testing. These changes will not affect your approved

- link integrity (all links go to actual pages, and open correctly in the original window or a new one as specified

- correct operation of:
site navigation
data management forms and display pages
dynamic update of course data
online form,
software restricting access to the confidential area of the site.

Implement redirect for bookmarks (legacy links) originating from old site
Client training as detailed in the Training Plan (below)
Post-launch monitoring and correction of 404 errors

Out of Scope
More than 2 initial home-page variants, unless potential designs are already available in the IWS portfolio
More than 2 cycles, or 3 weeks, of design review and refinement ; extensive design changes
Post-entry review of content (to be done by clients)
Design changes to accommodate renaming of pages or sections
Changes to the list of elements to be managed or to the fields to be recorded for each managed element once
those are established
Documentation other than a guide to managing the dy namic data elements of the site
Photography, research, or web search for images
CIT standard CommonSpot hosting, backup, and monitoring will be specified in a separate service agreement.
Post-launch maintenanc e and extensions by IWS will be specified in a separat e maintenance service

Business Processes

The new website will offer opportunities for improving some of the department’s business processes.
Clients will determine and document any changes that they will make to these processes.

Some business processes to be considered in this context are:
  - processing of requests for information and updates
  - review and update of page content and images
  - identification, production, entry, and management of eventual “managed data items” – people,
      features, news, research fields, seminars

Site Specification

This website project is specified by five documents that are considered to be attachments to this
project plan: site map, content tracker, functional specification, design comps, and redirect list.

Site map – a hierarchical, schematic map of the proposed site
       Originally developed in Visio, the site map information is appended in graphical form at the
       end of this document.

Content tracker – a spreadsheet listing, by page, every item of content, words, images, PDF,
programmed element, or other – to be included in the site, with data columns for recording who is
responsible for various aspects of processing the content, and for noting progress on these tasks.
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        A blank content tracker, in Excel, has been delivered to the clients for their use in managing
        content production and entry.

Functional Specification – defines the operation of all programmed elements of the site (such as
navigation , featured elements, secure areas).
       Originally developed as a separate Word document, the functional spec is included as part of
       this document (below).

The Design comps are a set of graphics files that will specify and display all of the visual features of
the site, including page layouts, colors and fonts to be used, identity elements, banner and thematic
images. These are developed in, and are the deliverable from, the design phase. They are in the form
of JPEGs.

The Redirect List will be developed during the project. It is a spreadsheet that lists every page in the
existing site for which the clients wish to recognize the current url and the page to which we s hould
redirect it in the new site. (This maintains the utility of existing bookmarks that users may have to the
current site.)

System Requirements

There are no non-standard system requirements for development of this website. Hosting system
requirements will be specified in the CIT-IS Website Hosting Service Agreement. The standard terms
for CommonSpot websites are:
            CommonSpot (including unlimited contributors, unlimited pages, all CommonSpot
            Solaris
            Oracle Database
            ColdFusion Application Server
            1GB Disk Space
            2GB/month Data Transfer
            1 SFTP/WebDAV Account
                    Extra SFTP/WebDAV account = $24/yr/account plus one time setup fee
            2GB/month Data Transfer
            99% Uptime
            One Business Day Response Time
            24x7 Hardware Monitoring
            Option to increase Disk Space & Bandwidth
                    Disk Space $75/GB/Yr
                    Bandwidth $24/GB/Yr

The cost for this hosting option is currently $1,845 per year. Post-launch support time can be
contracted for at the IWS standard rate.

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                                            Sample Website
                                       Functional Specifications
                 for Content Elements Requiring Programming, Interaction, or Multimedia

The purpose of this document is to describe the intended functioning of every aspect of the new website in such
a way that:
- IWS developers can implement that functionality correctly and efficiently
- IWS QA and clients can verify the operation of the programmed elements of the website against this

Features covered here include:
        - Kerberos authentication for faculty section
        - Passworded alumni page or section
Data management for:
        - featured items
        - people
        - research fields
        - news items
        - seminars
Dynamic dat a update of Cours es listing from Registrar’s dat abase
student survey (webform)
Research matrix (graphical; animated)

Note that figures provided here are intended to illustrate the general features and operation of the elements;
actual appearance – layout and styling – will be designed for the site and will vary from these examples.

Navigation includes on-page links and a site map, both dynamically generated.

On-page links
As indicated on the design comps, navigation options will vary with the level of the page.

All pages will have links to the secondary pages. These will include
        About the Department
        Undergraduate Programs
        Graduat e Programs
        Cont act us

All pages except the home page will include a standard breadcrumb trail.

Secondary and lower pages will have automatically -generated navigation that shows, at any time, all pages
directly above the current page plus any sibling and child pages. These will be displayed as dropdowns, as
expanding lists, or using some equivalent UI mechanism.

It should be possible to make any page below the secondary level invisible, unsearchable, and not listed in the
automatically-generated nav.
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Site Map
 The site map will occupy its own page,
 accessed through the footer. It will be
 dynamically generated and will allow
 expansion/collapse of sections, as in this


Kerberos authentication for faculty/ staff section
The pages in the “For Faculty and Staff” section will only be accessible to users with currently -active Kerberos
authentication that verifies that they are members of the department faculty or staff. If the user tries to open any
page in this section, either through the site navigation or through a direct url or bookmark, and that
authentication isn’t pres ent, the website will invoke CU-WebAuth to prompt the user for net ID and Kerberos
password. If access is denied, an explanation popup will be displayed.

Passworded alumni page or section
The page People/Alumni/ and any pages that are added under it will be accessible only to users who enter a
password. The password should only need to be entered once per session, whether or not the user n avigates
out of the Alumni section.

Authorized users will, when logged in, be able to open an admin pop -up that lets them change this password.

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Data Management

Featured Items

This site has provisions for one or two featured elements on the home page. Each item is defined by:

 * title
 category (if appropriate)
 * brief description or teaser text
 * long description
          - url
 * small image
 large image
 start display date
 end display date
 switches to force dis play or force hide

 As in the illustration 

 (* asterisks indicate required fields )

 (note that the selector for “Display location in
 the example will only be included for this site if
 there are two featured items on the home
 page, in which case it will select which of the
 two positions this item should occupy)

A form, similar to the Featured Items management form, will be provided for entering and editing people (or bio)
data. Fields to be recorded for eac h person are:
         * net ID
         * first name
         middle initial or name
         * last name
         * category (selects from department faculty, field faculty, or staff)
         image (required for department faculty)
         short bio (required for department faculty)
         website URL
         research fields (select any number from the currently -defined list of fields; required for department
         Note: office and campus phone number will be pulled from the University LDAP directory. Optionally,
         name fields can be pulled from LDAP based on net ID, this is TBD by clients .

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Research fields
A form, similar to the Featured Items management form, will be provided for defining research fields. Each field
will be specified by:
         * name
         * image
         * description (a few paragraphs of text)

This information will feed directly into the research matrix graphic (on the Research page) and into

News Items
A form, similar to the Featured Items management form, will be provided for entering and editing News Item
data. Fields to be recorded for eac h item are:
         * title
         * brief description or teaser text
         long description
         - url
         small image
         large image
         start display date
         end display date
         switches to force dis play or force hide

A form, similar to the Featured Items management form, will be provided for entering and editing News Item
data. Fields to be recorded for eac h item are:
         * title
         * category (if appropriate)
         * speaker first name
         speaker MI or middle name
         * speaker last name
         * date
         * time
         * place
         * abstract
         long description
         - url
         * switch to publish or hide

Dynamic data update of Course s listing from Regi strar’s database
The Courses page will include a complete list of all cours es offered by the MS&E department, in order of course
number, pulled from the Registrar’s database. This page will be dynamically generated whenever it is viewed.

Student survey
The Undergraduate Programs /Survey page will contain a webform that re-implements what is currently on <url
of existing survey page>

When a survey is completed, an email will be automatically sent to a designated survey administrator.

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Research matrix

On the Research page, clients would like to have an interactive mat rix that displays faculty by research fields, or
research fields by faculty.

This piece may include images or motion. This will be developed by the designer in collaboration with the
clients; the intention is to have something beautiful, impressive, but above all intuitive and easy to use.

Interface Requirements

User Interface                    Website UI to be specified by design comps and associated description of
                                  Authoring interface: CommonS pot
Systems Interfaces                Website will need to access and copy data from the Cornell Registrar’s
                                  database for listings of courses, and from the University LDAP directory for
                                  some authorization and contact information fields

Project Interdependencies

There are no ot her projects either within the client department or within CIT that are required for or that depend
on this project.

Training Plan

  Name/              Training             Level of             Updating          Training Documentation
  Group              Type(s)*             Acce ss             Capabilities
Group: MSE       Site Admin &      Full                   All pages              CommonSpot Administrator
Admin            Cont ribut or                                                   Manual
                                                                                 CommonSpot Contributor
                                                                                 Site manual
                                                                                 Faculty bio guide.
Group:           Cont ribut or     Cont ribut or access   All content and        CommonSpot Contributor
Authors                            to all pages and       images                 Manual
Faculty &                          managed elements                              Site manual
staff                                                                            Faculty bio guide.
for page
Group:           No training, Limited – only their  Personal web          Faculty bio guide.
Faculty          only         individual bio pages pages
                 documentation(access is driven by
*Types of training: From CommonSpot Service at Cornell: “Site Admin”, “Contributor” From PaperThin (the
company that produces CommonS pot): “Developer”. From IWS: introductory sessions as requested by client.

Admin and formal Contributor training are arranged with the CommonS pot Service Owner at Cornell. Informal
training sessions, usually brief, fo r small groups or individuals, on CommonSpot authoring and the update of
dynamic or “managed” elements for the specific site can be provided by IWS at our standard per -hour rate. Two
one-hour IWS training sessions are currently budgeted for this site.

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Administrator training can be scheduled for any time from well before the site launches to shortly after it
launches, but shouldn’t be delayed beyond that.

Cont ribut or training should be scheduled to complete slightly before the site is ready for content entry to begin.

High Level Schedule with Key Deliverables

The schedule given here includes all items from the initial, full project description. At the client’s option, some
items can be removed from the project plan or assigned a provisional status. Provisional status allows the client
to determine, some time into the development of the project, whether or not the section or feature will be
included. Such mid-course decisions may affect the schedule.

Milestone                                                                       Completion
                                                              Start Date
Content Development
Client Authors develop copy
All copy finalized and approved
Source images identified and obtained (including
permissions )
Source images forwarded to IWS

Design kickoff meeting
1 Design Presentation
Feedback Received from clients
2 Design Presentation (may be via web posting)
Feedback Received from clients
3 Design Presentation (if necessary; may be via web
Design Sign-off
Develop Server Infrastructure
Page templates coded
Static Pages created
Dynamic elements created
Images identified
Images processed, entered
Client site admin training completed
Client users and groups established
Cont ent entry training completed
Manual for dynamic data delivered to client
Cont ent Entry completed
IWS team site review
Initial QA review completed
QA fixes completed and verified
Link redirects identified
Link redirects implemented

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Milestone                                                                Completion
                                                           Start Date
Final client site review
Post-launch monitoring complete
Transition to Steady State-Project Close Out Report

In order to make a timely launch date:
    - project must be approved and initiated by <date>. IWS may be able to begin the project
        sooner than the proposed start date, but only if all approvals are in order.
    - both IWS and client staff must be readily available for meetings and conferences
    - project scope may not be extended (although it may be reduced)
    - both IWS and client staff must be vigilant about responding quickly to issues and maintaining
        awareness of the project’s tight timeline
    - it must be possible to react to unforeseen difficulties by trimming scope or redefining
        functionality; however, any such changes must be thoughtful and mutually-acceptable.

The schedule and cost estimates given here include all items from the initial, full project description.
At the client’s option, some items can be removed from the project plan or assigned a provisional
status. Provisional status allows the client to determine, some time into the development of the
project, whether or not the section or feature will be included. Such mid-course decisions may affect
the schedule.

Stakeholder Roles and Responsibilities
Stakeholders are all those groups, units, individuals or organizations, internal or external to our
organization, which are impacted by, or can impact, the outcomes of this project.

 Project Role              Who                            Project Responsibilities
Client project                        - coordinate all client-side project activities
manager                               - report and prioritize issues and problems for the IWS team
                                      - throughout the development phase, obtain information and
                                        decisions as needed to resolve issues and keep the project
                                        moving and on schedule
                                      - review weekly project status and expenditure reports
Client site                           - Complete CommonSpot site Administrator training
admin                                 - Prepare to take over site admin after launch
Client content        various         - write, edit, review or change website copy and images, and
authors                                 as necessary send materials to IWS, in accordance with
                                        the project schedule

Client faculty        various        Either enter their own biographical data into the new website
                                     database, or provide same in electronic format, proofed and
                                     approved, to the client project manager for entry by others. In
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                                     the latter case, review the content after entry and report any
                                     corrections that need to be made.

Communication Plan
The following methods will be used to keep stakeholders and outside parties informed and involved in
the project.

Website Project Documents

Just like the website consulting project, the website development project is initiated by the signing of a
Service Agreement (SA), which is a standard-form contract used by CIT for all projects.

In the course of the website development project, the project team will use two primary documents to
record and communicate about the project’s progress: status reports, and an issue log. The status
reports are in the same format as those of the consulting phase, including a summary of cost-tracking
to date. The issue log is used to document issues, action items related to them, and their resolution,
all through both development and QA. It is accessed through the online tracking system Bugzilla.

If at any time it becomes necessary to make significant changes to the scope, schedule, or
deliverables of the project, these will be recorded in change memoranda that may become addenda
to the Service Agreement.

The Training Plan section of this document is used to coordinate with both the CommonSpot Service
Owner and any other individuals who will be preparing documentation on the site or providing
specialized client training (such as on working with managed content).

Finally, when the project has been completed, a Closeout Report is prepared that summarizes
estimated and actual costs and schedule, and documents any remaining open issues (for example, if
a change is requested after a site has gone into QA, clients often prefer to launch the site as is and
return later to implement the change.)

Other Project Communications

What                      Who/Target        Purpose              When/Frequency        Type/Method(s)
Design Kickoff            Client Project    IWS designers        Once, at the start    Notes are
meeting                   manager and       describe our         of the design         circulated via
                          key               process,             phase                 email
                          stakeholders      standards; get
                                            information from
                                            clients on design
Design Reviews            Client Project    Review design        As revisions or       May be meetings
                          manager and       changes and          extensions to the     or by review of
                          key               refinements          design comps are      designs on the
                          stakeholders                           ready                 web.
Manager email             IWS and client    Main channel of      Typically several     email
exchange                  project           communication        messages a day
                          managers          about project        during
                                            issues, progress,    development
                                            questions,           phase
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What                      Who/Target       Purpose              When/Frequency       Type/Method(s)

Status reports            Client Project   Apprises clients     Weekly throughout    Emailed Word
                          manager          of project status,   development          document
                                           issues, progress,
                                           and costs
Major issues log          Client Project   documents            As needed            Word document
                          manager          issues, action
                                           items related to
                                           them, and their
Bug/minor issues log Client Project        documents            As needed            Website utility
                     manager               issues, action
                                           items related to
                                           them, and their
Final review of site      Client Project   Client inspection    Once, after IWS      At client’s option,
before launch             manager and      of site to insure    QA and before        meeting with
                          key              that when it is      launch               project team or
                          stakeholders     launched it meets                         asynchronously
                                           specifications                            by individual
                                                                                     inspection of
                                                                                     websites with any
                                                                                     issues recorded
                                                                                     in the log
Project Close out         Client Project   Summarizes          Once, at end of       Document which
Report                    manager and      project results,    project               is signed by all
                          key              costs, timeline,                          parties
                          stakeholders     records any open
Training Plan             Client Project   Identify levels and once                  document
                          manager, key     types of training
                          stakeholders,    required for all
                          training         client users

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Project Cost & Time Estimates

All project costs and dates are estimates. Projects are charged only for actual time spent.

 Design Pha se estimated costs
   Kickoff meeting; requirements and preferences
   develop design alternatives (2) - home and secondary
   Present design alternatives
   Basic design chosen, alterations identified
   Incorporate alternatives, develop further page designs
   Post design updates for review and feedback
   Receive client feedback
   Incorporate final alterations and post
   Sign-off on design

   Design phas e project management

   Design phas e total

Design Phase Cost-Reduction Option:

If clients can choose a design and complete all alterations on it in 2 reviews instead of 3, cost of
design phase can be reduced.

 Build phase estimated costs
   Designer time
   Programmer time
   Cont ent entry by IWS
   Project management
   Training sessions
   Quality Assurance testing
   QA fixes and launch preparation
   Post-launch monitoring and support
   Factor of safety @10%

   Build phase total hours

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Project Resourcing

    Project Role                #      Who (if         % Time        Dates Needed             Name of
                              Req’d   known) or                      (Date Range)             Manager
Project Manager           1
Programmer                1
Designer                  1
Content Entry, if by      2
QA Testing                1

Systems support           1

Resourcing Comments, Constraints, and/or Issues:

Management Approaches
The Cornell Project Management Methodology (CPMM) will be applied as the project management
approach to implementing this project, specifically, planning, tracking, reporting, and closing out the
project. The following sections define the standard approaches.

Issues Management

The following issues management procedures will be used:

Major issues (any that will significantly affect the scope, schedule, or budget for the project) will be
registered in the project Major Issues log.

The Project manager and Client Project Manager will determine how to address the issue and identify
how it will affect the scope, schedule and budget for the project.

On the Project Status Report, the project manager will report the issues currently being worked on,
their status, and the projected date of resolution. Any critical unresolved issues that are impacting the
scope, time, cost, or quality of the project will be highlighted in the status report.

When an issue is resolved, merged with another issue, or withdrawn, the issue log will be updated.
When an issue is closed the resolution is logged and it is moved to a closed status.

Minor issues will be logged and managed using the Bugzilla issue tracking program, which all IWS
participants and the Client PM will have access to.

Change Management

If the clients request a change that, in the opinion of the IWS project manager, significantly affects the
project’s scope, cost, resourcing, schedule, or the quality of the product, s/he will alert the client
project manager to the implications of the requested change, and they will develop and document a
mutually-agreeable plan for resolving the change request. This may result in their writing an

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addendum to the project service agreement which will need to be signed by the relevant parties at CIT
and the client department.

In the event that no mutually-agreeable plan for resolving the change request can be arrived at, the
original project scope will remain unchanged. In this case, the change request will be documented as
an open issue in the closeout report.

Transition Management Plan

The IWS Project Manager will work with the CommonSpot Service owner to arrange for taking the site
live, using the standard IWS Transition checklist. The url of the old site will be transferred to the new

A redirect utility will be built into the new site to capture attempts to access old-site urls (as from
existing bookmarks) and redirect them within the new site. Unless all such accesses are directed to
the new home page, the clients will fill in a Legacy Links Redirection List, identifying where each old-
site link is to be directed.

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Risk Plan
The following table includes risks that IWS staff are aware of as generally applicable to website
development tprojects. The list may be amended with input from the clients.

     Risk Factor               Impact on Project            Risk Plan (Strategy)             Resp.
     IWS resourcing            The project cost and         Assign full technical            Project
     conflicts or shortages    schedule (primarily          resources when possible          Manager
                               schedule) could overrun      Obtain commitment of
                                                            resources to meet the
                                                            project schedule
                                                            Create an alternate
                                                            resource plan for critical
     Clients are unable to     Project could run over       Reassign content                 Client
     prepare, approve, or      schedule; is unlikely to run responsibilities within client   project
     enter content by the      over cost                    department                       manager
     required deadline
                                                             Juggle IWS scheduling to        IWS PM
                                                             accommodate delay; for
                                                             content editing or entry,
                                                             use IWS trained and
                                                             supervised personnel
     Clients do not have as    Site is less attractive       Provide places in which         IWS
     many images as are                                      images can be added             staff
     needed for the site                                     easily later; search for and
                                                             buy images from vendors

                                                             commission local
                                                             photographers to take
                                                             more images; canvass     Client
                                                             faculty for images from  PM
                                                             their research papers
     Server/hosting/         Site can’t go live on time      Work with CIT and campus IWS PM
     infrastructure problems (note, this is unlikely, and if CSpot hosts to develop
                             it occurs it will get a LOT of alternatives
                             attention and resources
                             from CIT upper

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The signatures below indicate that the parties have read and agree to the terms and conditions under
which this offering is made.

Project Sponsors
Name                     Signature                 Date      Department          Title

Project Directors and/or Key Stakeholders
Name                     Signature                 Date      Department          Title

Project Approvers
The signatures below indicate agreement to Secure Required Resources and they have the authority
to commit resources for this project.
Name                     Signature                 Date      Department          Title

IWS Project Initiation Plan                   18
                                                                       Integrated Web Services (IWS)

Appendix: Map of Proposed Site

(for this example, only a home-page map is shown. Site maps usually comprise at least 4 pages such
as this, sometimes as many as 20.)

IWS Project Initiation Plan                  19

Description: How to Start a Website Business document sample